WHEN WE FIND OURSELVES IN A DARK HOLE
Allah tells us the story of the Prophet Yunus (Jonah), upon him be peace. Yunus (as) had done wrong. He had gone against the command of Allah and left his people. As result of his wrong-doing he found himself in a predicament. Swallowed by the large fish he found himself in a very dark hole. Trapped. The acid of the fish’s belly was burning his skin and he was trapped under three veils of darkness; the darkness of the night, the darkness of the depths of the ocean and the darkness of the fish’s belly. What did he do and what can we learn from him? Let’s read what Allah has told us ;
“And Dhun-Nun (Yunus), when he went off in anger and imagined that We shall not punish him! Be he cried through the darkness; “There is no God but You! Glorified are You! Truly, I have been of the wrong-doers.” (21:87)
The three steps of Yunus (as);
1. He cried out of a deep regret for what he had done, feeling shame before Allah
2. He praised Allah and returned back to Him, realising he had gone astray.
3. He admitted his mistakes, overcoming any ounce of denial in his heart.
Whenever we find ourselves in a difficult situation, we need to reflect and ask ourselves, it is because of something we have done. Have we put ourselves into this deep dark hole? The will most likely be, yes! Then we need to take the three steps of Yusuf to return back to Allah and seek His Forgiveness, using the dua of Yunus (as) so that Allah may help us too;
“So, We answered his call, and delivered him from the distress. And thus do We deliver the believers” (21:88)
Why do we keep falling into black holes?
We need to ask ourselves, honestly, yes, lets be really honest with ourselves, why do we keep slipping. What’s making us fall so easily? Perhaps, we are not standing on solid ground? Maybe, we don’t have a strong foothold on level ground. Maybe we are worshiping Allah as if we are standing on the edge of a cliff, and we could fall any minute;
“And among mankind is he who worships Allah as if he were upon the edge: if good befalls him, he is content therewith; but if a trial befalls him he turns back on his face. He loses both this world and the Hereafter. That is the evident loss.” (22:11)
How can we stop falling?
Muslim brothers and sisters with addiction may spend many years feeling as though they are on the edge. Sometimes falling, climbing back up, getting away from the edge from time to time and then slipping again. Its a place of high anxiety and danger and the one on the edge will not feel relaxed or contented. In recovery from addiction and sinfulness we need to try hard to get away from that edge. Its about turning our backs on the past, where lies all the dark holes and slippery terrain, and moving forward towards the straight path, that is the middle road. This is something that needs to begin with the heart. It is by taking the three steps of Prophet Yunus that will enable us to turn to Allah so that He can remove us from all the darkness and danger. Recovery from addiction and sinfulness is about being aware of keeping away from that edge, each and every day, insha’Allah.